A couple of days ago I posted a story on Instagram asking if you guys were interested in learning a bit about myself, how I managed to start traveling, and why I choose to live nomadically. In this post I will talk about what inspired me, making the decision to quit my job, and of course a little bit about who I am and my past that lead me up to this point. Here’s a little headshot if you don’t already know who I am! 😁
My name is Christopher Rodriguez, I’m 24 years old and I was born and raised in the beautiful city of Long Beach, California. I come from a very big family, which I love more than anything else. Besides family my other two passions are photography and travel. For the last two years I have been traveling around the world and I have somehow managed to make it to 49 countries, across 6 different continents! Every time I say/write that I still can’t believe it, simply because my life hasn’t always been this way! In fact, traveling around the world and living out of a backpack was something I had never even heard of prior to this idea being pitched at me. Before I took off to travel the world I served as a Paratrooper in the United States Army for 4 years and then I contracted for the government as a dieselmechanic for about 6 months before eventually resigning to pursue a life filled with adventure and constant excitement!
Just over 2 years ago I was working long hours as a contractor for the Army, servicing heavy equipment vehicles and spending well over 40 hours a week in a shop wearing coveralls and a ventilator. Even though I completely hated my job at the time, I was content and satisfied because I was making a really good salary and it was a career I could have stayed in easily my whole life. I had a great group of friends and they all pretty much complained about their jobs too, so I figured it was just normal to feel this way. Long story short, the plan was to work, buy a house, and I guess work more until I retire, but that all changed one day thanks to my buddy Mitch. Let me tell you a bit about this guy…..
I met Mitch in 2015 at a random party while I was in the military and we instantly got a long. After killing a bottle of vodka, shot for shot in front of group of people with this guy we decided that we should probably be friends. I had recently just gotten out of a big relationship so I was in the process of looking for a place to stay, that’s when Mitch offered me a room at his house, I couldn’t believe it personally because we were both drunk, but I told him I could come and see the room he had for rent in the morning. The next morning I moved in with Mitch and we lived together up until the day we left. So now that you know a bit about Mitch I can tell you about the role he played in all of this! One day I came home from work and Mitch is super excited and he starts telling me that he will be leaving for Australia and New Zealand in a few months for his childhood friends wedding and that he would love for me to come. First off, I looked at him quite retarded at first because I was so confused, I remember saying “Dude Australia! What! I don’t even have a passport? How do we get there?”. Mitch had lots of experience with traveling around the world and that was kind of his personality I would say at the time. I was always interested in the stories, but just didn’t ever see myself doing it. I gave it some thought for a few days, then I mentioned it again and he said “I’m going to just quit my job and take off man.” I said ” What the fuck dude! Really?”, a couple days later the man himself had convinced me to get a passport and a one way ticket to Australia! Just like that the journey was going to be starting, we had 6 months until our flight and we both didn’t have a whole lot saved. About 4 months prior to leaving we decided that from New Zealand we’d be going in to Europe and just backpacking Europe as well! My plan after those 6 months of travel was to come back home and work again, but that turned out to be false. I had fallen too much in love with a world that I had never known before! I love connecting with others, and my whole outlook on life has changed. Quitting my job and listening to some crazy New Zealand guy was the craziest decision I could’ve ever made, but it was definitely the best!
Now this question runs through my head quite often, but every time it does the question fades away quickly! Throughout this journey I’ve learned so much more about myself and I can definitely say that my outlook on life is completely different than it was two years ago! As of right now my plan is to continue to travel the world and continue to create the life that I wish to live for myself. I’m going to continue to roam around freely and enjoy every day like its my last! Most importantly I want to continue to inspire others to break out of their comfort zone and to not be afraid of change. Sometimes taking the first step into the unknown can change your life forever. You never know what is waiting for you out in this big world that we live in, unless you go out and explore it for yourself! So for the next, who knows how long…. I plan on traveling around the world and continuing to progress as a photographer. I would love to be able to make a full living as a freelance photographer, but as of right now I’m quite far away from achieving that goal. All I can do now is continue to work hard, seek those destinations that are less traveled, and continue to build a brand for myself throughout the platforms that I’m currently engaging on. Thank you so much for visiting my blog! Make sure to follow and leave a comment because I will definitely be posting on here more often!